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How can I convert one of my physical windows 7 desktops into a Virtual Machine that can be used to test my server migration before I make it live ?

Posted on 2016-10-30
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Last Modified: 2016-11-08
I have an existing SBS 2008 server  to which is connected 30 desktops running windows 7 .
I have taken delivery of a brand new windows 2012 R2 running 3 virtual servers . One DC and Data server , One SQL server and one Terminal Server .
I will be creating a brand new AD infrastructure but migrating DHCP and DNS and (hopefully FAx server ) before copying data from the SBS server and shutting it down .
I will need to make sure all the apps that are currently running on the desktops will work with the new server configuration and work out any glitches before cut over .
I would like to clone one of the desktops and mount it as a VM so I see how the apps will run once I migrate the desktops over .
What tool(s) would you recommend to accomplish this ?
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Question by:Andre P
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41866280
VMware vCenter Converter will do that. It is free.

By the way Windows Server 2012 R2 has been around for a while and Windows 7 Pro 64-bit works fine on Server 2012 R2.
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by:Andre P
ID: 41866282
I will be able to mount that VM on Hyper V ?
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by:NVIT
ID: 41866291
You can use Disk2VHD by Microsoft to convert to Hyper-V

http://www.howtogeek.com/213145/how-to%C2%A0convert-a-physical-windows-or-linux-pc-to-a-virtual-machine/

Scroll down to For Microsoft Hyper-V – Windows Only

https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/ee656415.aspx
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Taras Shved earned 500 total points
ID: 41866293
No, you won't. VMware  vCenter Converter will give you a VMDK file which is useless for Hyper-V environment. You need to perform a P2V (physical to virtual) conversion to VHDX.
1)  http://www.altaro.com/hyper-v/microsoft-virtual-machine-converter-hyper-v-p2v/
Is not supported anymore, as far as I know but still works.
2) https://hyperv.veeam.com/blog/how-to-convert-physical-machine-hyper-v-virtual-machine-disk2vhd/
This is one I use, works perfectly!
3) Use any backup solution like VEEAM, Acronis or Altaro to backup (clone) the whole PC and then restore it into a virtual machine.

If you will need to convert a virtual machine from Hyper-V to VMware or vice versa - which is V2V (virtual to vitual) - StarWind V2V Converter will do the job https://www.starwindsoftware.com/converter

Hope that helps.
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by:John Hurst
ID: 41866304
I was thinking to use ESX which is why I suggested vCenter.

Yes, use the tool for Hyper-V if that is what you wish to use.
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Expert Comment

by:pgm554
ID: 41866376
If the W7 machine is using an OEM (Dell HP)version of Windows ,it won't license correctly when virtualized.
The  activation is tied to the system BIOS.
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by:David Johnson, CD, MVP
ID: 41866440
In hyper-v create a 'Private switch'  and use this for your windows 7 client and test Server 2012R2.  This will isolate these two items from anything outside of this machine and also the host machine.  (You will need to setup either static ip addresses or have your own dhcp server)

FWIW, as long as the new servers domain and forest functional level are 2008 everything will just work. Your biggest challenge will be migrating users and shares.
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Expert Comment

by:Cris Hanna
ID: 41866507
If you're creating a brand new AD,  why would you try migrate DNS?

A new AD is going to require disjoining the SBS domain and joining the new domain
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